How existing medicines can help strengthen vulnerable immune systems

The thymus is a key organ in the immune system as it allows the maturation of the special T cells that regulate immune responses and direct other types …

Crucially, in the context of a pandemic and with an ageing population, rapamycin, everolimus and other members of this family of drugs are already licensed for a range of uses (including vein malformation and preventing organ rejection). This means that they are safe and could, in principle, be prescribed immediately. However, while initial studies have demonstrated efficacy, they were primarily undertaken to determine the best dose for patients. Researchers now need to test these drugs on a large scale to see whether they’re equally effective in enhancing immunity in large populations and specific subgroups (such as people with other existing health conditions, including liver and heart disorders).